The Blessing Of Giving
Book of 2 Corinthians Chapter 9
Why does God call on us to give?
We can give God nothing that we did not first get from Him!
God can just have a thought and it will materialize.
Let’s think of it this way at first:
We already know that the love of money is behind all the evil in this world with Satan pushing this thought.
1Ti 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
So the root of evil is selfishness, God expects us to be the opposite of that, the secret to defeating selfishness is giving!
Let’s look at nature:
The Sun exists to give light, and heat, and even life itself.
The Seas give life along with many other things.
The Earth gives life and is always giving.
Why should we defy what God has created?
God has given us a purpose in life and God measures us according to that purpose!
2Co 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
This is the theme of our lesson today.
We must never forget “receiving” is truly a blessing when we have a need for sure, but the “giver” gets an even greater blessing!
Act 20:35 I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive”.
Jesus would not have said this so many times if it were no true!
When we hate to give then we can see our own selfishness, which goes back to the root of all evil!
*****2Co 9:1 For as touching the ministering to the saints, it is superfluous for me to write to you:
2Co 9:2 For I know the forwardness of your mind, for which I boast of you to them of Macedonia, that Achaia was ready a year ago; and your zeal hath provoked very many.
2Co 9:3 Yet have I sent the brethren, lest our boasting of you should be in vain in this behalf; that, as I said, ye may be ready:
2Co 9:4 Lest haply if they of Macedonia come with me, and find you unprepared, we (that we say not, ye) should be ashamed in this same confident boasting.
2Co 9:5 Therefore I thought it necessary to exhort the brethren, that they would go before unto you, and make up beforehand your bounty, whereof ye had notice before, that the same might be ready, as a matter of bounty, and not as of covetousness.
It should be very plain, God expects His people to be givers!
At my place of worship, we call these things love offerings. These Scriptures are not referring to the “tithe” which God expects from every child of God who has an income.
We must always to willing to give to needy saints but by no means exclusively to them we are to still help the lost and needy too if we are able!
If the church only helped Christians we would not be following in the will of God!
If we helped only the lost we would not be showing love for our brothers and sisters in Christ!
Give it to Jesus and let Him put it where He knows it needs to go!
**After all God “gave” His Son in payment for “our” sin for He had none Himself!
**Christ came to this earth to “give” of Himself!
**Those who give to please God should never be caught unprepared “to give”!
These people of Corinth understood these things but it was now time to show proof of their love and to make the collections.
“Being unprepared to give” to a giver can be embarrassing to him and cause him shame!
In today’s world almost no one carries much money on them at all for many reasons and we need to be aware of the time of collection so we can be prepared.
Paul had plans to return to Corinth when the Macedonians arrived at his location.
We can be sure that none of those who traveled with Titus where of Macedonia!
And we should understand from these words of Paul that he had never had negative things to say about this church at Corinth and had in fact boasted of their zeal to do right by the Word of God, including the zeal to give to those who had great needs.
Heb 3:14 For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;
Jesus Christ gave everything He had, including His life that we could be saved if we only believed. The name of Christ and the name Christian then means “sacrificial giving”!
So being prepared shows the love of Christ and does not show covetousness.
Sadly we if we are honest, most of us “including myself” rarely give all that we are able to give!
But in reverse we many times spend more than we are able “including myself” for things that we really do not even need!
As long as people are homeless and people starving in this world we need to consider ways to help, if possible.
As long as there are diseases that could wipe out an entire population we need to consider ways to help, if possible.
As long as there are disasters in this world such as tornadoes, hurricanes, typhoons, earthquakes, and any the many other such things, we need to consider ways we can help, if possible.
When the Church shows covetousness we are showing cold-hearted worldliness!
We sometimes forget this basic rule of thumb in the Word of God.
*****2Co 9:6 But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.
2Co 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
God gives us the example to two different Christians:
1) One who sows sparingly.
2) The other who sows bountifully.
First: the seed that is sown, has been selected and stored from a previous bounty that God had already provided, just for the purpose of sowing. All his needs had been met and he is prepared to sow again when the proper time comes.
Second: Not many farmers cast seed one at a time or “sparingly” but usually with an open handful “bountifully”. They are hopeful for a fruitful harvest every time they sow!
Third: the seed is sown on an empty field, a bare field in want of growth. (Those in want, especially those of faith)
Fourth: then the seed is covered where the sower has faith, hope, and patience that the harvest will be bountiful. (He sows these things in private and his good deeds may not be noticed till some time passes.
What does God say to each individual?
Pro 3:9 Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:
And why should we do this?
Pro 3:10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.
We must first give “the tithe” which are the first fruits of what God has already provided. God will then bless this giving and our barns will be full and our vineyards blessed. “By the way new wine, is the freshest of fresh grape juice”, which relates to continuously providing, even though our barns are already full.
It is from this plenty, that is far above our needs, that giving to others in need comes from but God also says to give till it hurts a little from time to time and what does God say about these things?
God loves a cheerful giver!
We can see these are two different things!
The giver who pleases God deliberately is a reflection of God’s love.
The Lord Jesus Christ hated the shame of the cross but He cheerfully gave Himself for our sin, because He has no sin.
Heb 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; “who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross”, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
To be a Christian says “I want to be like Christ”. Jesus Christ was a “Cheerful Giver” of all He had.
God does not give us a fixed sum to give for charity.
God does look at the quality or the nature of our giving.
1) Is it of our own free will.
2) Does it cause an uneasiness in our mind.(grudgingly)(out of sorrow)(reluctance)
3) Did we give out of necessity. (Were we coaxed into giving by outside means)
4) God must actually see a “Cheerful giver” for God to be pleased!
And what is God reward?
*****2Co 9:8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:
2Co 9:9 (As it is written, He hath dispersed abroad; he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth for ever.
There is no greater blessing than this in the days we have on this earth before our physical death!
Salvation is the free “grace” of God. It cannot be bought, earned, or won!
When we are not “cheerful givers” we are out of the order of God’s “system of grace” which revolves around the Cross of Jesus Christ!
God loves what makes people happy and the spirit of love shown to others is one the sources of His happiness.
Those who live just for themselves first become wretched and then they become poor in many things of this life.
If we do not believe that God is able then we are saying the God is no longer the Creator who spoke and all things became reality!
After we have shown “faith”, God shows us His grace.
After we know “hope” God shows us His peace.
After we know “charity” God makes all His “grace” abound towards us!
All three are required but which is the greatest after salvation?
1Co 13:13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
Any other thoughts of the “Hope” of God are just childish reactions!
1Co 13:11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
So who provides that seed for the sower to begin with?
*****2Co 9:10 Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;)
2Co 9:11 Being enriched in every thing to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God.
Isaiah said it this way:
Isa 55:10 For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater:
It is the Lord provides the seed for the sower!
It is the Lord who blesses the seed from the sower!
It is the Lord who provides all our needs!
So the first motive for being a “cheerful giver” is to obtain the “grace” and the “blessings of God”, not out of duty, but out of love.
We should understand that word “ministereth” as a “promise” of God.
God will provide bread for our own food!
God will multiply our own seed so we can sow!
God will increase the fruit of our own righteousness!
And these things will be continuous!
Notice, these are not only spiritual blessings(that will last forever) but also material blessings(to use in this life).
God encourages us all to be “cheerful givers” with these promises!
God will more than return what the giver gives!
The truth is that each believer will receive so that he can give so leaves no excuse for hoarding the gifts of God!
The truth is each and every believer becomes “a channel” through which God sends His blessings!
Again this is God’s plan and He only asks us all to be a part of His plan and not make our own plans!
Isa 55:8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
Isa 55:9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Simply put, “we cannot out-give God”!
Eph 3:20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,
Eph 3:21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.
What is the truth of the “Gospel”?
*****2Co 9:12 For the administration of this service not only supplieth the want of the saints, but is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God;
Being a”cheerful giver” not only makes up the deficiencies of those in need, it relieves their needs and furnishes them with hope under sorrowful circumstances!
But that is not all:
**It means that we all can enter into the throne room of God to give thanks to God for His “Grace”!
**It also means we are fools to think God will not look harshly upon selfishness!
In fact Jesus said these words to a rich young man one day:
Mat 19:21 Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.
The point being, Jesus was perfect because He gave every thing He had, including His life for each and everyone of us!
None of us can be perfect in this life but this rich young man was foolish and it led to his many sorrows:
Mat 19:22 But when the young man heard that saying, “he went away sorrowful”: for he had great possessions.
We should all clearly understand God knows we are nothing but dirt and He had great pity upon us all but a “cheerful giver” will still receive the “praise of God”!
There are still other reasons for being a “cheerful giver”.
*****2Co 9:13 Whiles by the experiment of this ministration they glorify God for your professed subjection unto the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal distribution unto them, and unto all men;
What is the truth of salvation?
The salvation of the Lord is then:
4) Cannot Fail
5) And is Forever
We will never understand the “Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ” until we become subjected to the “Gospel”!
We must willingly submit ourselves to the entire “Gospel” and not in bits and pieces!
***So then a “cheerful giver” proves his loyalty to the “Gospel”!
A “cheerful giver” will give and give and keep on giving until the Lord returns!
***And yet another object of “giving” is for the world to “glorify God”!
The “Gospel” is the truth and comes with a binding authority higher than any of this earth.
The “Gospel” reveals the only method of salvation, one which man could never even have conceived.
The “Gospel” prescribes the only rule for practical living.
The “Gospel” is God’s love letter to His greatest creation, mankind!
The “Gospel” makes us aware that the gifts of God, our resources, are to be used to carry this “Gospel” throughout this world!
***This includes our time, our influence, and our money!
But there is still more:
*****2Co 9:14 And by their prayer for you, which long after you for the exceeding grace of God in you.
**Being a “cheerful giver” will enhance our prayer life!
Giving stirs up great prayers, great love, and great fellowship among all God’s people!
No other results can be greater than these as we all serve the Lord
Eph 1:15 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints,
Eph 1:16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
In fact how can we not be “cheerful givers’?
*****2Co 9:15 Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.
***The greatest gift ever given to this world is the gift of God’s only begotten Son!
Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Joh 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
How can we not give back things “that are not required” but things that we can “cheerfully give” to make sure that this world has the opportunity to hear this wonderful message of God?
I assure you that these Scriptures are as much for me as they are for anyone else!
I have felt ashamed in my own selfishness!
Let’s Pray that we all can become “cheerful givers” for the cause of Christ!